Safes are made to be bulky and heavy, so no one can take them – or anything inside of them – out of the house. That becomes a problem when moving long-distance, so you might find yourself wondering how to move a gun safe. It’s a hard thing to do and potentially dangerous, too. Things can go wrong, and you could end up damaging something or getting hurt, so the best way to handle it is to hire professional cross-country movers. If that’s not an option for you, worry not, as we’ve got you covered with these amazing tips.
Plan Ahead and Get the Right Equipment
This is super important. Before all else – measure the gun safe so you know what you’re dealing with. As safes are heavy, you don’t want to have to move it again afterwards, even if just to another room in your new home. So, find a place for it and plan the route to getting it there. Protect the floors with rags or cloth to avoid damage, and remove any obstacles on the way. You will need vault moving essentials, like a dolly and a loading ramp, and some packing materials for moving like a stretch wrap, moving blankets, or pads and straps. Here’s a quick recap of the things you should do before you start:
- Measure the home vault
- Pre-plan the route
- Protect your old and new home
- Get the essential packing materials for moving
Secure the Gun Safe for Moving
The first thing you’ll want to do is empty the vault, shelving included, if there is any. Make sure to remove all the weapons out of the vault and handle them properly. You can even remove the door, if possible, to make it less heavy. It can take up to 20% of the weight off. If you can’t remove the door, make sure it’s closed and locked. Then use some old towels or blankets to wrap it and go over it with stretch wrap.
How to Reattach the Door
The downside of removing the door is that you have to reattach it when unpacking after the move, which can be tricky because those hinges are precise! To do this, you will need to use a hydraulic automotive jack to support the weight of the door. You can also take this opportunity to add a little bit of lithium grease to make sure your door opens and closes smoothly. Check out the following video for further instructions.
Pick Out Friends to Help With the Heavy Lifting
There’s no way you’ll be able to do this by yourself, so it’s best to get some friends. You’ll need three people who have experience moving heavy objects and you all have to be in sync with the strategy of the move and each other. When you finish, you can throw the best packing party at your place to show your appreciation.
Put Safety First
It’s of the utmost importance that you make safety your top priority during this task. We’ve already mentioned some ways to protect your place by padding the furniture and floors, but the most important thing here is to protect your safety and that of your friends.
Use proper lifting techniques and make sure all of you wear closed-toe shoes with good soles so you avoid hurting your feet or slipping. Also, get some thick gloves for your hands – trust us, you’ll need them. And don’t forget to stay hydrated!
Best Tips on What Not to Do
Obviously, you don’t want to skip the planning process and just rush into it. You’d be surprised to know how many people do so and end up getting stuck halfway through. That then calls for a lot more lifting and carrying, costing them a lot more time and effort. You might have heard of different tricks, like using golf balls or metal pipes, and this is a no-no. All that enormous weight will be concentrated on the balls, which can only damage the floor, leaving dents or scratches. Or they won’t even roll at all. And it’s easy to lose control of pipes, so the vault could crash into someone. It’s best to stick with the dolly.
Navigating the Stairs
Do you know how to move a gun safe down the stairs? To do this, you should first get your hands on a heavy-duty appliance dolly. If you don’t have it and don’t want to buy it – borrow or rent it. Choose one that’s strong enough for your vault and learn how to move a gun safe with a dolly.
How to Move a 1000 lb Gun Safe
Once you’ve wrapped it in pads and wrap, tilt it to one side and secure it on the dolly with straps or ropes as tightly as possible. Get at least two friends to help you. Make sure the stairs are sturdy enough to handle the weight of the vault and that of you and your helpers. Two people should be positioned below the vault to guide it, and the person on top should carefully direct it. If you have to go up a flight of stairs, simply do the same thing in reverse.
How to Move a 500 lb Gun Safe
These are somewhat lighter, but still too heavy for you to carry alone. As with the 1000 lb one, tilt it on the dolly, strap it, and you are ready to go. If the dolly tips over, don’t try to catch it – that’s how people get hurt. Just let it drop and start all over again. Once you’re out of your home, use a loading ramp to wheel it up the truck (you’ll need help for that, too). Make sure you know how to pack a moving truck properly.
Consider Hiring Professional Long-Distance Movers
These tips should be enough to guide you through the process. Still, there are reasons why you should hire a moving company – all this seems like too much of a hassle and you are not sure you’d be able to do it safely by yourself when moving across the country. Although there are some items movers won’t move, a safe is not one of them! Now that you understand how difficult moving safes actually is, if you feel like showing appreciation for your moving service providers who will do all the packing for you, this is how to tip your movers.